Gerard Pique has revealed that Barcelona players were willing to go the extra length to help the club ensure the return of Brazil international Neymar to the Camp Nou last summer.
Neymar disclosed his desire to leave Paris Saint-Germain in the summer transfer window and return to his former club but the two clubs couldn’t reach an agreement over a fee.
According to Pique, he and his teammates did their best to ensure that the transfer went through, adding that they were willing to make sacrifices.
“We didn’t stump up money,” he said.
”What we said to the president was whether we could change our contracts because we knew there was a Financial Fair Play issue… so we said to the president, rather than earn something in year one, we could earn it in year two or three or four.
”At the end of the day we want to go along with what the club is doing and if we can help the club, in this case avoiding a financial fair problem, we’ve got no problem in doing that.
”Rather than reducing our salary it was about finding a formula so that if the club wanted to sign Neymar they could. At the time they thought it was a good idea, but then other problems cropped up.”
He added that Barca players warned Neymar against leaving for Paris Saint-Germain initially, pointing out that he was going to a golden prison. He also noted that he wouldn’t be surprised to see the Brazilian back at Barca at some point.
Neymar missed the start of the season for PSG due to the numerous transfer issues but returned to action to score 4 goals in 5 games before being ruled out due to another injury.